Sunday 30 November 2014

Sunday Weekly Weigh-in: It Really is Sunday

I'm pretty amazed I'm managing to post on time, I always mean to do this on Sunday but everything is everywhere at the moment. This week has been no better, to say it has been hectic is an understatement. I have got a couple of days off this week, Monday and next Friday so two long weekends to rest and get into a somewhat Christmas spirit.

I have to admit to some failings this week, I managed to do my 5 x 5 strength training on the Monday but not again in the week, I did it Saturday but this does mean I can't do it again until Monday.

I haven't done that much better with my steps, although not terrible apart from the days I've been at home, when I have been at work I've managed to do over 8,000. I'm typing this post in the morning, but by the end of Sunday (when I'll be posting this) I'm hoping to be at 5,000 steps, I'll just have to make the effort.

Food wise I've been a bit better than the week before but not ideal, it's so hard now that I'm not logging on MFP - this is something I will go back to when I have more time as it does really help me keep it all in balance. I had avocado and mozzarella salad for tea on Wednesday night and it reminded me that salad in the cold weather can still be lovely. I've also got frozen sprouts in the freezer as I just love them at this time of the year. Must pick up some kale too to go along with some Cauldron sausages, yummy!

On the plus side I did order my first £5 voucher from Bounts for Waitrose, it isn't much but it is something. If you do use something to track your activity like fitbit it's really worth signing up to Bounts as you earn points for your activity, it's all automated so I signed up, linked to my fitbit then forgot, it's been a few months but I've done nothing extra to earn the cash. If you fancy signing up if you use my referral code we'll both get 100 points.

Short Term Goals
An increase in steps next week and to workout three times, plus when I do work out I want be cranking up the weight that I'm lifting at the moment my top weight is 17kg but that is only with bent over rows.

Long Term Goals
To be closer to 70,000 steps each week. A couple of dress sizes down by March would be ideal.

Samhain's Catnip Review: Happy Pet Pressed Catnip Leaf

I love to spoil my cat Samhain. I adore finding new items for him to try when it comes to toys and treats, I love getting him the Cat Hampurr but I also like to seek out new things for him myself. I've already stocked up on some amazing treats for Christmas including the product we're reviewing today, I just had to buy two so I could try one out immediately.

Now how cats react to catnip vary but there is an obvious difference between good and bad catnip. Samhain "plays" with catnip in a different way to other cats I have known, rather than throwing it around like confetti and rolling in it he prefers to eat it. This is quite normal and perfectly safe but his reaction to it is usually to mellow out rather than get hysterical and jumpy.

Today we've been playing with.....

Happy Pet Pressed Catnip Leaf
I had wondered if there was a product like this out there when I realised he liked to ingest it, he loves just normal catnip leaves but he can have too much of a good thing and in what could be considered a rock 'n' roll move he ended up puking it up in my mums shoe after over indulging. We're careful to limit it but it's hard to tell what the limit is which is why this pressed catnip leaf is ideal.

Full review including a video is after the cut....

Saturday 29 November 2014

ASOS Black Friday Purchases

Now I didn't go to ASOS because of the whole crazy Black Friday, it just coincided with my pay day. This doesn't mean I haven't picked up some Black Friday deals across other sites as I have but I wanted to browse ASOS for some items in particular, at least, I had rough ideas of what I wanted but it was also nice to be able to then have a 20% discount.

Firstly I wanted something sparkly, really I wanted a silver pencil skirt but unfortunately I couldn't find what I quite wanted. Secondly I wanted a dress that would be somewhat dressy but also suitable for the day. Now as there are lots of dresses on the site and the majority are gorgeous, I was amazingly lucky to have found this dress. It's just so stunning.

I've pretty much decided it's my favourite dress this year, it's from the Glamorous tall range at ASOS. Glamorous are fast becoming my favourite brand, they are really good value for money. Although their clothing is inexpensive they don't skimp on the quality, I also find their patterns stand out and are always fairly unique. A lot of their items have such a retro feel which I love, this dress is particularly 70's with its dark floral print, even the material feels vintage just without the wear and tear.

It's quite a heavy material and what you can't tell in the photos is the shape. It's a tea dress, fitted at the waist and flares out over the hips, the arms are to the elbow and it's very slimming. It's such a nice dress I'll be either wearing it in the day with boots or at night with velvet platform shoes.

The rest of my purchases are after the cut......

Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Lip Tar in Harlot Review

I love Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics, I already own both a very dark shade of the lip tar, and a very light shade (which I'm still to try) but whilst picking up some Christmas presents for others I decided to buy a little treat for myself and chose to pick up an in-between shade, a light but bright reddish pink called Harlot. 

I love how the product is presented, the little case is handy for popping in your handbag and the brush is fantastic but also very necessary (I'll mention why later). I like the fact that having it all together makes it easy to find and quicker to use, I hate it when I have the product but not the brush and vice versa. The one thing that would make it better would be a little mirror in there too, but that's such a minor thing.

This colour is both light and vibrant on the lips, a real stand out, old Hollywood type pink/red. Even though this is quite light the colour can get everywhere if you're not careful, I would never apply with my finger as it's quite hard to get off, before you know it you'd be covered in it which is why the brush is rather necessary but it doesn't mean that it takes extra work to apply, it's just different. Although I like to be able to just throw lipstick on I always like to take my time with vibrant colours no matter what.

The product is somewhat goopy on the lips but this isn't uncomfortable. It's really glossy but once on it settles and somewhat sets after a bit rather than smudging.

I've found this shade to be long lasting, even after the initial layering had calmed down my lips were suitably stained meaning I was never without colour between touching it up. I still haven't picked up their primer, I imagine if I had that on underneath any of their shades the staying power would be even greater.

I just love OCC's Lip Tar, even though I wouldn't usually wear a lip gloss if I want that look my first stop is for the Lip Tar.

Friday 28 November 2014

Christmas Gift Guide - Nail Polish Sets

Christmas Gift Guide - Nail Polish Sets
Clockwise from top left: Ciaté Candy Cane House Festive Scented Nail Polish Gift Set £25.00 // Topshop Mini Pastel Nail Trio Gift Set £12 // OPI Nails -  Nordic Collection Mini Pack Gift Set £15 // butter LONDON Gilded Gears Nail Set £18 // nails inc. Whitechapel Snowflake Gift £16

I decided for this gift guide I'd look at nail polish sets, there are so many gorgeous sets out there so I decided to pick a few choice favourites.

Now the first set on my list is from Ciaté and is incredibly festive, not only are the four miniatures presented in a gorgeous candy cane house but the sparkly varnishes are also festively scented, I've loved to get my hands on the cinnamon one. The Topshop mini trio may no be festive for everyone but I find pastel shades incredibly fitting at this time of the year, I do love my gaudy red and green but pastels whisk you into the new year with ease. The OPI set is a lovely mix of shades, another miniatures set that isn't in your face festive but perfect throughout the rest of the year. The butter LONDON set is full on glamorous with a few daytime shades thrown in, I only wish these were full size rather than miniatures, Last but not least, nails inc. possibly the most special and the only one that isn't an actual set but a perfectly presents Christmas nail varnish, this is a lovely snowflake effect, this one has a slight hint of gold which is just stunning.

I am overloaded with nail polish but I know I'll have to pick up the nails inc. Whitechapel Snowflake before the festive period but I may try and resist adding any (many) to my Christmas wishlist.

Wednesday 26 November 2014

Benefit they're real! push-up liner Review

Bottom left without mascara and bottom right with

Quite a few months back Benefit released they're real! push-up liner to much fanfare, I resisted the temptation even though I'd loved its sister product, they're real! mascara. It's not that I don't love dramatic eyeliner, I do, but I've never been able to use a pen properly, my preference is gel liner with a separate brush. Well, it has been my preference since they discontinued Babe Cake eyeliner, this was a Benefit product and it was just amazing, a dry powder that you added a little water to, this created a paste which was amazing to work with. So I'm possibly also a little bitter that Benefit once made the perfect eyeliner then took it away from me.

Elle UK came with a sample with their December issue, I just couldn't stay away any longer.

I have to confess, I'm in love, no pen has worked so well for me. It took me a few squeezes to get to grips with how it dispenses but after that it was so easy to work with. It's not quite a brush, more of a flexible plastic funnel. I was able to draw fairly precisely onto my eyelids - the product is more of a paste so it's easier to work with than runny liquid eyeliner, I could do a fine line, build it up thicker and end with a neat flick.

As this product dries immediately it was easy to go from thin to thick without ruining what I had already applied with smudging. The product set immediately which may sound ideal but it did mean any tiny mistakes was hard to rectify, but this quality did add to the longevity meaning I got a good five hours wear before it started to dry and flake. I do wonder if it would be wise to top up occasionally?

they're real! push-up liner with added they're real! mascara
I really was cynical to begin with but this eyeliner was so easy to use and very portable which means it will be making its way into my make-up bag in the near future. 

Monday 24 November 2014

Sunday Weekly Weigh-in: Just Pretend it's Sunday Today

Okay another week, another week where I'm late but at least I am posting this week. It's been another quick, weird week where I've felt like I've been running around at a 100 miles per hour to get things done. I'm still visiting my dad some evenings but not each - Samhain got himself in another bad fight which meant another trip to the vets! He's healing well and is currently lying next to me, trying to stay awake, I give it five minutes until he has a full on snore.

I've felt like I've been grabbing things on the run but I've made more of an effort this week when I am about in the evenings. We do have to make our way through our freezer - as always it feels like we have everything apart from one key ingredient to make the meal, will have to be more inventive this week. My lunch is a bit boring and light, I'm having a sandwich with just fake meat - I hate having anything too soggy in my sandwich unless I'm eating it straight after. In summer my salad was huge and possibly around the same amount of calories - along with fruit and yoghurt, it's about the same calories as my sandwich but the sandwich is gone in a few bites! While everything is so hectic I'll stick with the sandwich but I will go back to salads pretty soon, by the New Year anyway.

I have carried on with my 5x5 training, I'm doing that three times a week, I haven't been able to keep set days as it's never 100% sure when I'll visit dad but as long as I have a day off in-between I'll be fine. Slowly increasing the weight I'm lifting but still making sure I take it slowly, keep the correct posture and don't strain anywhere.

I've been trying with my steps, I've found that I've still not been paying as much attention but I have been keeping tabs - just not as often.

I've hit 10,000 on one day, been slightly under, around 200 under, on two days and then fairly low the rest of the week but it's an improvement.

Short Term Goals
I want to aim to get my Mon-Fri steps up to 10,000 - although I do have a couple of short work weeks to try and get on top of Christmas stuff, and get in the mood. I know we've had such a crappy years but I'm trying to make the last month as good as it can be, I want to be positive for dad, gran, my cousins, my mum and my aunt. I'm just tired so the short work weeks will be very welcome.

Long Term Goals
I want to drop a dress size by next March. Then a holiday, with a new holiday wardrobe. At least a long weekend away.

Sunday 23 November 2014

What's in Samhain's Cat Hampurr? November 2014

This week hasn't been so great for Samhain, he has been in a fight AGAIN, I know this will keep happening until he sorts out his territory with the other male cat in the neighbourhood but it's distressing, at least for me, he really doesn't seem to care at all. He ended up torn to shreds, his back looked like Freddy Krueger had been at it, both his ears were cut both inside and out plus there was a cut around his eye. Worse than all of that were all the puncture wounds on his legs. This had all happened even after I broke up the fight, the fight that was in my neighbours garden, three doors down. I'm very fortunate they allow me to go into their gardens to sort this out as he is a scrapper, even though he seems to be worse off he still gets himself into trouble. They both go at it forever, neither backs down and it just gets too bloody. I hope they sort it out soon as it is every other day, this one ended up with another trip to the vets to be on the safe side.

This really meant the Cat Hampurr was very welcome this week, he needed a treat, especially as I've had to stop him from going out until his worst wounds are healed. So he was in a bit of a grump with me until I gave him his box, so what did he get?

Meowing Heads Complete Wet Food Gone Fishin' & Drumstix 2x85g
I was excited to see this in the box, new wet food that he likes is always good to add in to his diet. I'm always trying to add more quality products to his diet, of course he has to like them. I tried the Drumstix pot the very night we opened the box. I wasn't sure at first as he doesn't always go for terrine style dishes but he just wolfed it down, he absolutely adored it so I'll have to pick up some more. Today I'll try the Gone Fishin' he is super picky with fish unfortunately, I'd like him to have one fish dish a day, luckily he has just fallen in love with the Applaws Tuna & Seaweed which was a relief but hopefully he will enjoy this as well because he needs a mix.

Thrive Complete Dry Food Chicken and Salmon & Herring 2x50g
Always good to see Thrvie, very pleased to be able to try their complete dry food biscuits out on him. He is undecided their wet food, some days he loves it, other days he just picks at it but he does love their dried treats, I use them when teachings him tricks, well, trick! So how did the biscuits fare? Purrfect, he loves them as much as he loves any of his treats, he practically throws them in his mouth. Another item for me to pick up!

Natures Menu Chicken & Liver treats 60g
I haven't seen these treats before in the shops but they look like a cat deli chew stick just in smaller pieces. The flavour is chicken and liver but to me they smell somewhat like bacon Wheat Crunchies. As you can see from the photo they were the item he was excited about trying out. They lived up to his excitement, he just gobbled them down. One thing I particularly like is the resealable package - his treat bag is on the corner of my bed, as much as I love having his treats to hand for him I don't want to be able to smell them.

Thrive Freeze Dried Cat Treats 100% Tuna 25g
Now this is a product I already purchase but I do use them an awful lot when playing with him and teaching him tricks. Samhain recognises the packaging/smell so was excited to see this.

Animal Instincts Catnips Funky Fish Toy
Samhain is the first cat I've had in my family that loves to play, he has to have a run around a few times a day. I usually have cat teasers when I play with him but in an adorable but almost sad way he does sometimes play with himself. He likes to throw his smaller toys around so this is ideal, so far he's mainly enjoyed bopping the toy so that it makes the noise and lights up. For some reason this is a comfort for him. He is a very peculiar cat.

Cosmic Catnip Catnip Bubbles
Now I feel like this is more of a treat for me. Not because I enjoy catnip, no, it's down to Samhain's reaction to this. I had some of these for my previous cat and he just wasn't that bothered whereas Samhain is very curious, but then scared, no, curious, he just can't make up his mind. At first he was all "Hooray for bubbles" until he went to sniff one, it popped, he jumped and now he watches with a concerned but still curious look on his face!

I love these Cat Hampurr's, I know I'm completely spoiling him but he gets so excited. He knows what it is when it arrives, he becomes rather giddy but still well behaved waiting until I unpack it all. When I unpacked it this week I didn't have much time to spend with him so it all got packed away straight after apart from the items we were trying. I had the box on the bed tonight and he started tapping on the box signalling that he wanted to try out more items which we did.

Samhain is a joy, he is wonderful and as we don't know his life before he came here just four months ago I want to make sure his life now is a fabulous one, so I'll continue with my mission to find good quality food and toys with a big help from Cat Hampurr's.

Saturday 22 November 2014

Christmas Gift Guide - Fragrances

Christmas Gift Guide - Fragrances
From left to right: Marc Jacobs Daisy Limited Edition Eau de Toilette Fragrance Set £54.00; Thierry Mugler Alien Loyalty Gift Set £50.00; Viktor & Rolf BONBON Eau de Parfum £50; Marc Jacobs Daisy Dream Eau de Toilette Fragrance Set £54.00; Jo Malone Cologne Collection £68.00; Marc Jacobs Daisy Eau So Fresh Eau de Toilette Gift Set £58.00; Narciso Rodriguez NARCISO Eau de Parfum Fragrance Set £58.00; Tom Ford Black Orchid Eau de Parfum coffret £76.00

Buying fragrance for another person is one of the hardest things to get right, perfume can smell different from one person to another yet I find it one of the most exciting things to receive, even if I don't know how suited to me they will be. I just love surprises, and trying something new is always at the top of my wishlist. I think the trick when buying for others is just to make an educated guess, look at what they would usually wear and find something similar but new for them to try. A sparkly box underneath the Christmas tree will brighten anyone's day.

I've chosen a few fragrances that are scents I personally love and I believe they would make wonderful gifts. I've chosen three from the Marc Jacobs Daisy range, I just love the pretty boxes along with the scent, they would make a perfect gift for anyone with plenty of variations to choose from. Another fantastic looking box as well as the scent is the Thierry Mugler Alien set, I love all Thierry Mugler scents but out of them all I find Alien to be the best all-rounder. I've included the Narciso Rodriquez set as this is something I've been eyeing for a while and the Tom Ford set as this is a new favourite of mine, I wear it most days, both I believe are more mature scents but that could just be my nostrils. I had to include the Jo Malone set - I'd love this as I've never owned a single Jo Malone scent and to be honest I don't quite know where to start so to have a few little bottles to try would be wonderful - it also wouldn't be Christmas without a set of miniatures. Now the final one on my list isn't part of a set, but that doesn't matter, Viktor & Rolf's BONBON has made it onto my list as this is the top of my actual Christmas wishlist, fingers crossed it makes its way under my tree.

So, which fragrance is at the top of your Christmas wishlist?

Wednesday 19 November 2014

OPI It's Totally Fort Worth It Review and Swatch

OPI It's Totally Fort Worth It

It's been a while since I've had the time to paint my nails, but last week I'd had enough, my nails were looking dull and as I hadn't even been wearing a clear nail varnish I had been subject to a few breakages. I wanted to go with something subtle and as the frosty weather has been quickly setting in I decided to do my nails to match so chose OPI's It's Totally Fort Worth It.

Now this is from a rather old collection, OPI's Texas collection was released back in 2011. Which is actually a bonus as it can be picked up for next to nothing, usually under £5. In the bottle it looks a bit grey but on it's more like the colour shown online, a light lavender. When you look closely it's much like a grey with tiny particles of pink giving it a gorgeous sparkle - this shows more in photos than the overall purple effect unfortunately. It's pretty without being too in your face.

It applied easily and smoothly, it also dried remarkably quickly, touch dry within five minutes. I initially painted on two coats but found as it was a light colour three coats was needed. As it dried so quickly this wasn't an issue.

The other plus is the longevity, I didn't even add a top coat, now I managed to scratch a line through my thumbnail the second day but other than that I haven't managed to chip it, I'm on day five and although there is some wear at the ends it isn't at all obvious.

Each time I use an OPI nail varnish I love them even more, as this one was so quick to dry I've decided I have time to take this one off and try something else. 

Monday 17 November 2014

Sunday Weekly Weigh-in: Late Again!

I can't quite remember my last weigh in post but I know it must be in the distant past. My time is still quite precious although I'm not going down to see dad daily at the moment. If he was close by I would but it's 45 minutes each way meaning our trip is 4 hours long. Plus, I'm tired, going to work then heading straight down before coming home to eat, wash, sleep then back to work, well it has been taking its toll.

I did have a week off work in which I managed to do bugger all except watch films in-between visiting dad. It felt good but after a week of not walking much distance I found my thighs were like jelly after the second flight of stairs first day back at work! I haven't had the best diet, and you know what? I do feel rather crappy for it which was enough to spur me into action last week, I ate better, planned a few meals although crappy eating left me with a sweet tooth and I snacked more than usual.

I have got myself back into exercising, but only just Saturday - I had planned to start while on leave but I couldn't be bothered. I've decided to try and aim for 2 or 3 days a week of 30-45 minutes of strength training rather than cardio, I will also try and make more of an effort with my steps each day although today I'm so incredibly sore after yesterday's work-out and I only used 2.5kg weights. It will get better.

For now I'm continuing to not log my food as it does take a bit of time to do. I do still continue to weigh my portions so all is not lost.

Steps for the last week aren't the best but I'm trying my hardest but when I have a free moment I just want to rest.

I almost forgot, I bought myself a pair of jeans, my first pair in five years, I went for the curvy range but they're too big. They're so soft I decided to keep them but wear them with a belt. As I'm tall I've always struggled to find pairs I feel comfortable in, even when I was thin, I just hate it when they have a short crotch, these don't, another reason why I kept them!

Saturday 15 November 2014

What's in my BirchBox? November 2014

It felt like a long wait between receiving an email to say my box had been sent to receiving it in the post, it was only five days but as I was really excited this month it felt like a lifetime. I didn't post about the box last month I should mention it was fabulous as it always is, I just didn't have the time to post with being in and out of hospital and work! I'm back with it this month, again it doesn't disappoint.

The theme this month is Cosy At Home - I stuck with this theme by opening it from the comfort of my bed, and to answer their cosy night in question;

So what did I get? It's all revealed after the cut!

Tuesday 11 November 2014

Illamasqua Glamore Lipstick in Cherub Review

I was excited to see the addition of nude shades to the Glamore collection, their range of satin lipsticks. Before the Glamore collection was launched earlier this year their lipstick range was all matte, which are amazingly fantastic but it's nice to have something softer. Having fell in love with Glissade from their initial release I was excited to pick up a more natural shade to take me into winter.

Using their nude shade selector, very handy when you're greedy like me as it minimises your options, I decided to go with cherub, a warm coral shade. Although it's a very light shade the lipstick isn't sheen so this colour is strong which is perfect. Sheen lipsticks are nice but wanting to wear a light shade doesn't necessarily mean you don't want to stand out.

It smells delicious (silly thing to observe for a lipstick but it counts), sits perfectly on the lips as it feels soft and moisturising. Colour remains on the lips even after blotting, I do find I need to retouch more than darker shades but I've found this with most light shades.

It's a beautiful natural shade that works perfectly year round, it's strong enough to work on its own but also works well with heavy eye make-up, a perfect all rounder. 

Saturday 8 November 2014

NARS And God Created The Woman Palette Review

NARS And God Created The Woman Palette £35.00 exclusive to Space.NK (or Sephora in the U.S.)

I found it very hard to resist this palette, I picked it up in a pre-Christmas Space.NK splurge last month. Having only owned one NARS eyeshadow before, and loved it, I was determined to pick up another one, or two, or three. It's just so hard to choose, so many fantastic shades so which to go for? Well, this palette, with six travel sized eyeshadows was ideal, not only that but it also includes a travel sized Pro Prime, Smudge Proof, Eyeshadow Base and a Wide Contour Eyeshadow Brush, It still might not appear to be the bargain of the century to all but NARS eyeshadows are high quality so if you are looking to experiment with NARS a palette like this is an excellent introduction - it would also make a perfect Christmas gift.

I don't always play it safe but I do go for brown shades 8 out of 10 times, it suits my eye colour and you can pretty much make it work with everything, day or night, any situation. This palette has a perfect mix of shades to work with, There are two intensely shimmery shades, a light rose gold and the other a glistening bronze, there are two matte browns with just a hint of sparkle, one a beige and the other a rich dark brown - almost black, the other two shades are both very glittery, one is a red-brown and the other is black. All shades work both separately and together, depending on the look you wish to go for.

A couple of basic looks;

A lighter daytime look using the light glistening shades and the matte beige brown, then a rich dark brown lining the lower lashes. 
Again using the rose gold all over and topping up with the beige all over the lower lid and the rich dark brown in the creases. Lined with eyeshadow underneath and gel liner along the top lashes.

Now the two above are quite similar but with different styles, the top is more eyshadow heavy but also a lighter daytime look whereas the one below is lighter with the eyshadow but with the liner it makes it a stronger look. There are so many combinations of shadow you can use, you can use just a shimmering eyeshadow or go full on dark brown.

So far I've used it most days, I've been busy recently so it has been handy to just have this one set to go for. When I only have a minute to do my make-up I just use one of the shimmery shades with a lick of mascara, if I have five minutes I'll use a shimmery shade, the beige and the rich dark brown to line. The size is perfect, it's handbag size but it doesn't feel like it will run out anytime soon, even with heavy usage.

I love NARS and although I've already picked this up for myself, I will be adding a few other NARS products to the top of my Christmas wish list, hint hint! 

Thursday 6 November 2014

Sally Hansen Salon Manicure Polish in Red Zin Review

Sally Hansen Salon Manicure Polish in Red Zin £6.99 for 14.7ml

I'm rather nostalgic about Sally Hansen, it reminds me of childhood, my mum loved the brand. We used to pick it up whenever we went on holiday to Florida (we traveled around the state quite a bit), we would go into Eckerds (like a giant Superdrug), everything seemed so exotic as the layout was different to pharmacy's in the UK, make-up was set out differently and Sally Hansen felt like the in thing, specially when it was pretty rare in the U.K. Now I know the basic, clear nail varnishes have been commonplace in the U.K. for years but until recently I haven't seen a selection of all the shades. Roll back a month or so ago and my local Superdrug had a new addition, a huge selection of Sally Hansen in a magnificent amount of colours.

Now I knew I had to pick one up but what to go for? Well, with Autumn rolling round I decided to try and find a perfect dark red. Now this wasn't the only one to choose from, this was one of three, so why did I go for this one? Random choice, I had to pick before the shop closed so this was the one I went for.

Red Zin, possibly a shortening of Zinfandel, a red wine, is a dark berry red, it's the sort of shade you long for in winter, it's a shade I longed for as a teenager, most people love a dark red.

The nail varnish applies evenly and smoothly, the brush is perfect - short and wide, I wish more brands had this type of brush as it really makes application easier. It takes a while to dry, I say a while but really it's an average amount of time - around 15 minutes, from the point of view of someone that is impatient with this type of thing.

It really is a gorgeous, glossy blood red shade, it's so perfect it makes the waiting for it to dry worthwhile.